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Thread: TRX-4....dead??

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    TRX-4....dead??

    Hi everyone!
    My son has a TRX-4 that won't work. I admittedly don't know much about them, so I'm hoping for some help from the experts!

    He was driving through some water in a culvert and it tipped over, coming to rest partially covered in water. It remained there for a couple of hours until I was able to retrieve it for him (this was about a year ago, and he hasn't been able to use it since).

    When we connect the battery and press the blue button on the ESC, nothing happens. No lights, nothing. Battery is fully charged, unless that was damaged when wet? No issues charging it, so I'm thinking the issue is more likely to be the ESC?

    Thanks in advance!
    Keith

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    RC Qualifier ElectricPropils's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by knosewor View Post
    Hi everyone!
    My son has a TRX-4 that won't work. I admittedly don't know much about them, so I'm hoping for some help from the experts!

    He was driving through some water in a culvert and it tipped over, coming to rest partially covered in water. It remained there for a couple of hours until I was able to retrieve it for him (this was about a year ago, and he hasn't been able to use it since).

    When we connect the battery and press the blue button on the ESC, nothing happens. No lights, nothing. Battery is fully charged, unless that was damaged when wet? No issues charging it, so I'm thinking the issue is more likely to be the ESC?

    Thanks in advance!
    Keith
    While the Trx-4 is waterproof it is not recommended that you keep your vehicle, or any RC car, in water for an extended period of time. I would presume that either your battery is bad or your ESC is bad. If you have LIPO then try plugging it into your charger and checking the cell voltages.
    The present is theirs; the future, is mine.

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    RC Turnbuckle Jr. Greatscott's Avatar
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    WELCOME TO THE FORUMS!!!

    Unlike the submarines I was stationed on, the TRX4 is not designed for prolonged submergence.

    The first thing I would do is check the battery, make sure it actually has voltage at the business end of at least 3.2VDC per cell. If it is a 2 cell, you should have at least 6.4VDC, and a 3 cell, at least 9.6VDC.

    If the battery is good, recommend opening up the receiver (RX) case and seeing if there is water in there. If the RX case flooded out there is a chance you shorted the ESC's BEC, killing the ESC, which would explain why the LED does not turn on when you press the button.
    Submarine Qualified, Chief Inducted, Navy Retired

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    RC Qualifier TITANIUM94010's Avatar
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    What battery are you using? Nimh or Lipo?
    The XL5 ESC is pretty waterproof, and I've never had it fail because of water issues, so I think it's the battery. Brushed motors are pretty much submarines so thats not the issue either.

    Also do you know which side the car was covered in? It would help to identify which electronics were bad. If it were ESC side, It's not so bad, if it was reciever side, you migth have a broken reciever. Although the reciever definitly isn't the cause of the ESC not turning on. Check the battery first.
    Jumping: maneuver and pray it won't break.

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    RC Champion RCWilly's Avatar
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    I second Greatscott's response. The receiver box isn't made to be completely submerged for extended periods of time. It's designed to be splashproof and can be submerged for a few minutes at most.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Greatscott View Post
    WELCOME TO THE FORUMS!!!

    Unlike the submarines I was stationed on, the TRX4 is not designed for prolonged submergence.

    The first thing I would do is check the battery, make sure it actually has voltage at the business end of at least 3.2VDC per cell. If it is a 2 cell, you should have at least 6.4VDC, and a 3 cell, at least 9.6VDC.

    If the battery is good, recommend opening up the receiver (RX) case and seeing if there is water in there. If the RX case flooded out there is a chance you shorted the ESC's BEC, killing the ESC, which would explain why the LED does not turn on when you press the button.
    totally agree with this.

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    well this is a mess the entire truck is most likely going to need come apart for cleaning letting them sit after going into water is the worst thing you can do it let everything rust up and seize. look at getting a bearing set from like fast eddie. you may need all the electronics. the flysky gt-5 would make a good upgrade for the controller and receiver and a hobbywing axe brushless system will take care of the esc and motor turning the truck into a monster

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    RC Qualifier TITANIUM94010's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by chris5100 View Post
    well this is a mess the entire truck is most likely going to need come apart for cleaning letting them sit after going into water is the worst thing you can do it let everything rust up and seize. look at getting a bearing set from like fast eddie. you may need all the electronics. the flysky gt-5 would make a good upgrade for the controller and receiver and a hobbywing axe brushless system will take care of the esc and motor turning the truck into a monster
    I feel like people have got to stop shoving the idea that they need a brushless system on to their crawlers. Not everyone wants to spend 200 dollars on something that will give a mediocre increase in performance depending on what they use their crawler for. I'm not saying brushless is bad or anything, its just it's not always worth it to spend 200+ dollars on something that they don't even need.
    With that being said, you do want to check the bearings for rust. If they're completely sized up, swap them out, but if they're fine, you don't have to. Bearings are relatively cheap and running with bad bearings dosen't really effect your crawler other than maybe a little bit more stress on the motor and maybe some squeaking.

    I think the receiver should be fine as long as it wasn't the one submerged in water. If your battery isnt the one broken, it's probably the ESC. The hobbywing 1080 is a pretty nice brushed controller for 41 dollars. (if the reciever is the one broken, the ESC would turn on but there will be no radio signal). If the reciever ends up also being broken, you have a choice between getting a new reciever for 40ish dollars or a new radio system or a new reciever. A new radio system is going to cost more, but it may be better if you want to add new chanels. The stock reciever is kind of overpriced, but it's going to be cheaper than swapping out the radio system.
    Jumping: maneuver and pray it won't break.

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    Quote Originally Posted by TITANIUM94010 View Post
    Brushed motors are pretty much submarines so thats not the issue either.
    Do you mean brushless or brushed? I haven't had good experiences with my Titan 12T or the Velineon and Castle and water...
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    Quote Originally Posted by SpeedieGonzales View Post
    Do you mean brushless or brushed? I haven't had good experiences with my Titan 12T or the Velineon and Castle and water...
    I think he means brushless, the brushed motors are, in general conditions, awfull for water.

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    RC Qualifier TITANIUM94010's Avatar
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    Brushed motors work 100% of the time in water if clean.

    Brushless motors themself are not waterproof, but most manufactures use sealed cans and bearings which means that they can be waterproof, however, a brushed motor can't be damaged just by getting water in it, a brushless one can be.
    Jumping: maneuver and pray it won't break.

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    RC Qualifier ElectricPropils's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TITANIUM94010 View Post
    Brushed motors work 100% of the time in water if clean.

    Brushless motors themself are not waterproof, but most manufactures use sealed cans and bearings which means that they can be waterproof, however, a brushed motor can't be damaged just by getting water in it, a brushless one can be.
    Neither can be damaged by just letting water get in, that is assuming that the water has an extremely low ion count (like distilled water). Of course if not properly dried rust can form and ruin your motor but inherently no, water isn't bad for electric motors. Salt water has high electrical conductivity, it will absolutely destroy any motor that is submerged in it.
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    RC Qualifier TITANIUM94010's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ElectricPropils View Post
    Neither can be damaged by just letting water get in, that is assuming that the water has an extremely low ion count (like distilled water). Of course if not properly dried rust can form and ruin your motor but inherently no, water isn't bad for electric motors. Salt water has high electrical conductivity, it will absolutely destroy any motor that is submerged in it.
    Yeah, saltwater is the bane of all electronics.
    But brushless motors dont be damaged by water? By that I mean brushless motors with their internals exposed and no seals.
    Jumping: maneuver and pray it won't break.

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    RC Qualifier ElectricPropils's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TITANIUM94010 View Post
    Yeah, saltwater is the bane of all electronics.
    But brushless motors dont be damaged by water? By that I mean brushless motors with their internals exposed and no seals.
    Nope! As long as it isn't sensored there would be no damage, obviously I'm excluding possible rust damage but with proper care that can be avoided.
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    Quote Originally Posted by ElectricPropils View Post
    Nope! As long as it isn't sensored there would be no damage, obviously I'm excluding possible rust damage but with proper care that can be avoided.
    That might explain why my castle motor is being a pain in the booty, it's sensored even though I don't use it. bruh... Do they make a Sidewinder 3800kv without the sensor? Is it more or less expensive?
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    Only thing that happens when a sensored motor's sensor wire gets wet it can lose the sensor signal, making it act as a sensorless system. Since your not using a sensored esc, it wont matter.

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    RC Qualifier ElectricPropils's Avatar
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    Sensored motors can have problems when going through water because they usually have special circuitry it the motor to allow for the sensors to send proper signals to the ESC, though I'm sure that some manufacturers treat their circuit boards with a waterproofing agent or something similar it is always goo to check if your motor is waterproof before you submerge it.

    Like I said, the higher the ion count in the water (more conductive minerals, especially salt) the more problems you are going to have when driving your car in that water.
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    RC Champion grizzly03's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ElectricPropils View Post
    Sensored motors can have problems when going through water because they usually have special circuitry it the motor to allow for the sensors to send proper signals to the ESC, though I'm sure that some manufacturers treat their circuit boards with a waterproofing agent or something similar it is always goo to check if your motor is waterproof before you submerge it.

    Like I said, the higher the ion count in the water (more conductive minerals, especially salt) the more problems you are going to have when driving your car in that water.
    You might want to do your research. Running a sensored motor in a sensorless configuration the sensors have zero affect! It doesn't matter if they are dry or wet, or even physically removed.

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    RC Qualifier ElectricPropils's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by grizzly03 View Post
    You might want to do your research. Running a sensored motor in a sensorless configuration the sensors have zero affect! It doesn't matter if they are dry or wet, or even physically removed.
    Maybe think there is a little bit of confusion, I am aware that the motor will still work, I was just stating that the sensored portion of the motor wouldn't. There are some cheap sensored systems that rely on feedback from the sensors to propperly function but for the most part your car will still drive.
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    RC Champion grizzly03's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ElectricPropils View Post
    Maybe think there is a little bit of confusion, I am aware that the motor will still work, I was just stating that the sensored portion of the motor wouldn't. There are some cheap sensored systems that rely on feedback from the sensors to propperly function but for the most part your car will still drive.
    That's the same thing as Steve g posted in post #16.

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    I'm starting to get really ****ed off, I'mma take a break from the forums, cuz like I have so much bad luck with these things, first the driveshafts then the susp ripping out then the spur then the first motor then the second battery, then the second motor and now the freaking third motor. This stuff is e x p e n s i v e... cya guys

    Mmm maybe a rant thread first. I'll do it later
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    RC Qualifier ElectricPropils's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by grizzly03 View Post
    That's the same thing as Steve g posted in post #16.
    I, was just considering that the ESC couldn't run the motor without the signal. That's my bad for neglecting the sensored systems that are smart enough to run without a sensored motor (cough cough, the cheap ones).
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    Quote Originally Posted by Greatscott View Post
    WELCOME TO THE FORUMS!!!

    Unlike the submarines I was stationed on, the TRX4 is not designed for prolonged submergence.

    The first thing I would do is check the battery, make sure it actually has voltage at the business end of at least 3.2VDC per cell. If it is a 2 cell, you should have at least 6.4VDC, and a 3 cell, at least 9.6VDC.

    If the battery is good, recommend opening up the receiver (RX) case and seeing if there is water in there. If the RX case flooded out there is a chance you shorted the ESC's BEC, killing the ESC, which would explain why the LED does not turn on when you press the button.
    Hi sorry for the delayed response! So I checked the battery. There’s 9.77 volts reading on my meter. The battery is a 8.4v NIMH (3000 MAH). There are 7 cells in it all together. Does that mean the battery is good?
    Thanks.

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    RC Champion RCWilly's Avatar
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    The battery sounds like it's fine. It's probably another issue (most likely receiver or ESC).
    Everyday's a gift, thus now is called the present.

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    I did some further testing and determined there is power going to the ESC, but not coming out to the motor (likely because it won’t turn on, allowing power to flow to those wires). There is another short accessory (maybe?) wire that comes off the ESC, which is showing around the same voltage as the battery (around 10v). When I put the meter on the red and black wires of the 3-wire that goes from the ESC to the receiver, I get around .97 volts. Not sure if that’s good or not, or if that’s even a valid test for determining anything useful.

    I’m leaning towards the ESC being the issue but don’t want to spend the money on one and find out it’s not it.

    Also, I opened the receiver and there doesn’t appear to have been any water in there. All looks good.

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    One other thing to mention...that short accessory wire coming off the ESC has some corrosion on the underside of the connector. Wondering if that shorted out the ESC maybe when it that wire got wet?

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    RC Champion RCWilly's Avatar
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    If you have a local hobby shop nearby, you can go there and test to see whether it's the ESC.
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    Quote Originally Posted by knosewor View Post
    One other thing to mention...that short accessory wire coming off the ESC has some corrosion on the underside of the connector. Wondering if that shorted out the ESC maybe when it that wire got wet?
    ¿Do you mean the wire with the red connector?



    It's a power out for a fan to refrigerate the ESC, or accesory wire, for example, lights.

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    Yes that’s the wire I was referring to.

    Also, regards to the local hobby shop, there’s nothing nothing around here unfortunately.

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    RC Qualifier TITANIUM94010's Avatar
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    The red plug is a JST, but a little corrosion or even a lot of corrosion shouldn't affect the ESC, unless the positive and negative somehow managed to connect together, which is unlikely.

    Does your servo still work? Power on the ESC and twist the steering to see if the servo works. If it does, it would narrow down the possibilities a little, because we would know the ESC to receiver connector works. If the servo does not work, it could be because 1. the ESC/receiver connector is broken/internally broken. 2. the receiver somehow broke (this is unlikely due to there being no water in the receiver box)

    It could also be a motor issue, disconnect the motor plugs and put the voltage tester on the thick red and black bullet connectors and press the throttle all the way down. If it gets a read/fluxuates as you move the throttle, it's most likely that the motor has stopped working. If you do not get a voltage reading that moves as you pull the throttle, then your ESC is probably bad.
    Jumping: maneuver and pray it won't break.

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    Quote Originally Posted by TITANIUM94010 View Post
    The red plug is a JST, but a little corrosion or even a lot of corrosion shouldn't affect the ESC, unless the positive and negative somehow managed to connect together, which is unlikely.

    Does your servo still work? Power on the ESC and twist the steering to see if the servo works. If it does, it would narrow down the possibilities a little, because we would know the ESC to receiver connector works. If the servo does not work, it could be because 1. the ESC/receiver connector is broken/internally broken. 2. the receiver somehow broke (this is unlikely due to there being no water in the receiver box)

    It could also be a motor issue, disconnect the motor plugs and put the voltage tester on the thick red and black bullet connectors and press the throttle all the way down. If it gets a read/fluxuates as you move the throttle, it's most likely that the motor has stopped working. If you do not get a voltage reading that moves as you pull the throttle, then your ESC is probably bad.
    Thanks for the tip. I did what you suggested and there’s no power to the bullet connectors when I pull the throttle. So I think this probably confirms the ESC is toast?

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    Next question....what does everyone suggest I buy as a middle or the road quality replacement ESC? And where’s the best place online to get them? Btw I’m in Canada. TIA ��

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    its pricey but its a buy once cry once deal get the hobbywing axe system.

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    Yeah esc is bad. If you are staying brushed, get the HW 1080, and you can still use your motor. It's the best 3s brushed esc for the price. When your motor goes, and it will go, get a holmes hobbies crawlmaster sport 550 in about a 10t. Its a 5 slot motor, great crawling motor for the price (20 ish USA).
    If you can afford it, brushless is a nice upgrade. More torque, more wheel speed, longer battery life, and the motors last way longer then a brushed motor. The hobbywing axe is a good system, but it doesn't respond to throttle input like every other esc does. You wont see the truck slow down when you hit an obstacle, as the esc will automatically increase the throttle to maintain its current speed. Some people like it, others hate it. Your also limited to hobbywing axe motors only. And there is no throttle curve adjustment for the esc. That's a setting once you drive with it, you'll never drive without it. So I'd recommend the castle creations mamba X. Has more tuning options, can take more voltage, has a stronger more adjustable bec, and you can run other brand motors on it, including your brushed stock motor. The mamba x is what i run in my crawlers, paired with holmes hobbies puller pros.

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    Quote Originally Posted by knosewor View Post
    Next question....what does everyone suggest I buy as a middle or the road quality replacement ESC? And where’s the best place online to get them? Btw I’m in Canada. TIA ��
    Hobbywing 1080 is the must have in this case.

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    Quote Originally Posted by chris5100 View Post
    its pricey but its a buy once cry once deal get the hobbywing axe system.
    This is the beast for crawling and affordable price.

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    Yeah, hobbywing 1080 is a great ESC. I think the stock motor is fine, but if you want to replace that too Holmes Hobbies motors are nice.
    Jumping: maneuver and pray it won't break.

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